Great Humanitarian Trips Around the World
Post-Hurricane Home Building, U.S. Gulf Coast
Habitat for Humanity
What It’s About: When Hurricane Katrina devastated coastal communities in Louisiana, Alabama, and Mississippi, Habitat for Humanity was on the scene almost immediately, doing what the organization is best known for: building and rebuilding homes. Now, three years later, HFH has established more than a dozen community-affiliate volunteer centers throughout the Gulf Coast region; together, they’ve built more than 1,300 houses since 2005.
What it Involves: Building and repairing homes for the thousands of displaced Gulf region families who still need them. Volunteers don’t need prior building skills; they’re guided and supervised by construction project leaders and also work alongside local residents whose homes were lost or damaged in the hurricanes (putting “sweat equity” into the building projects is one way they earn eligibility to have their own houses rebuilt).
Roughing-It Rating: Low. Several of HFH’s regional outreach centers have full-service “volunteer villages,” with comfortable bunkhouses, modern bathrooms, cafeterias, and lounges with TV and Internet access.
Cost: Varies by regional program; contact Habitat for Humanity for pricing
More Information: Habitat for Humanity